about 11 p. m., May 2, to the right of the Plank road, a little less than a mile in rear of Chancellorsville. The men rested on their arms in line of battle.
About 1 a. m., May 3, we found that the enemy were advancing upon our line with loud and continuous cheers. My men quietly awaited the charge till within good range, as I supposed, when they opened a tremendous fire upon the advancing column, which seemed to have the effect of halting them immediately. The charge was accompanied by a severe chap fire from a great many pieces of cannon, planted on a commanding position in the direction of Chancellorsville. Though the enemy extended his left flank far beyond our right, and my regiment was on the extreme right of our line, his left did not advance much more than his right, yet enough to show his intention of turning our right. This plan was probably defeated by two of my right companies, which were formed at right angles with the line on a large road. The officers of my regiment had been instructed to obey and repeat any orders coming from the left, and, when the fight had almost ceased, the command to fall back was started by some mistake near the left and repeated to the right. The regiment at once fell back a short distance without the least confusion, but without difficulty was reformed in its proper place. We took several prisoners, such was the confusion of the enemy and the close proximity of the contending forces; also a flag belonging to the Third Maine Volunteers, which was captured by Captain [Niven] Clark's company (E.)
At 2 a. m. all was quiet, and we were permitted to rest till after daybreak. Near the time of sunrise their batteries again opened upon us, killing some of my men. In a very short time General Lane ordered me to advance my right by a change of direction to the left, which being done without halting, we charged forward in brigade line of battle, moving in a line nearly parallel to the Plank road toward Chancellorsville. When we approached the enemy's breastworks, which defended his batteries, we were met by such a storm of solid shot, grape, and canister as I never before witnessed. Here a brigade of Confederates, a little in advance and on my right, masked the front of my regiment, excepting two companies on my left. General Lane, being always present, perceived this, and ordered me to support the line in my front with whatever companies lapped it. Companies B and G passed on with the brigade, when the line before me halted. After standing a murderous fire for some time, my men fell back with the line to a breastworks which we had just passed over, and formed promptly. They did not seem discouraged, though our loss had been very heavy. General Lane then ordered me to assist in holding this line if the enemy charged upon it. General Stuart now came dashing along the line, ordering us forward to a second charge. The whole line again advanced and fought with the most determined courage, the artillery and musketry moving our men down, till suddenly the Yankees were discovered flanking my regiment on the right. As I then had no support, I withdrew, and formed the second time behind the breastworks. Hearing that General Lane was forming the brigade on the Plank road, I reported to him to know if I should not join him. While absent, General Stuart again commanded the line forward, and my regiment charged through the same terrible artillery firing the third time, led by Captain [Edward F.] Lovill, Company A, to the support of our batteries, which had just got into position on the hill from which those of the enemy had been driven.
My officers behaved very gallantly. I cannot speak in too high terms of their bravery and activity during the whole of this hard fight. Not